Download Full Text (483 KB)




575 Fifth Avenue, Brooklyn, NY, Architect, April 2010.

575 Fifth Avenue is a 35,000 square foot supportive housing building, the first of its kind in the community of Park Slope, Brooklyn. This mixed-use, supportive housing development is comprised of offices, retail, and apartments for 48 individuals in need including the elderly, those who have been formerly homeless and young adults coming out of foster care. The client, The Fifth Avenue Committee, a local not-for-profit, runs a workforce training program in skilled woodworking that provided the cabinetwork including cabinets, counters and storage units fabricated in bamboo, designed by AGA.

The project though with a moderate construction budget, relates strongly to its neighborhood, as well as achieving a high level of sustainability to reduce operating costs and promote wellness. 575 Fifth is awaiting certification for a LEED Gold rating. The building is 5 stories at the commercial street side and cuts back to 4 stories as it meets the lower, smaller scaled buildings on the side street. Further, a stepped mews leading to a garden entrance between the new building and the community’s existing homes reinforces the pedestrian scale. The garden containing seating and recreational areas, a fountain as well as shrubs and flowers native to Brooklyn weaves the building into the community.

575 Fifth initially met with some community opposition; AGA was actively involved with FAC to reach an agreement with the neighborhood and the building is now considered a valued part of the community. This history, and the building’s distinctive design elements, creates an iconic symbol for the neighborhood.


Women in the Design World: Work in Progress, an exhibition presented by the Sam Fos School of Design and Visual arts in conjunction with the Women in Architecture Symposium 2014.

Amie Gross, AIA / AB Architecture, 1975